Jackson State picked 2nd in SWAC hoops; Tigers, Braves, & Delta - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Jackson State picked 2nd in SWAC hoops; Tigers, Braves, & Delta Devils on All-SWAC Team

Press Release from the Southwestern Athletic Conference

Texas Southern University was picked to win the 2016-17 Southwestern Athletic Conference men's basketball championship in a preseason poll of the league's head coaches and sports information directors.

The announcement was made by the SWAC during its annual media teleconference on Wednesday, October 12.

The Tigers finished 2015-16 with an overall record of 18-15 and a 16-2 conference mark. TSU ended last season’s conference tournament in the semifinals, falling to eventual champion Southern. Runner-up Jackson State was picked to finish in second place, followed by Southern in third. Alabama State was predicted to finish fourth with Alcorn State coming in fifth.

Rounding out the poll includes: Prairie View A&M, Mississippi Valley State, Alabama A&M, Arkansas-Pine Bluff, and Grambling State.

The 2016-17 All-SWAC preseason first and second teams is highlighted by sophomore forward/center Derrick Griffin of TSU. Griffin was selected as the SWAC Preseason Player of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year, a pair of honors he also earned at the end of last season, which made him the first player to accomplish the feat since the 2013-14 season when Aaric Murray claimed both honors for the Tigers.

An All-America honorable mention by the Associated Press, Griffin broke the SWAC single season record for consecutive double-doubles (12) and most in a season (17). He was the only player in the league to average a double-double throughout conference play with 13.5 points per game and 11.3 rebounds per game, while also leading the SWAC in blocked shots with 2.3 per contest for a total of 55.  

Additionally, Griffin was voted on as an All-SWAC preseason first team selection at center.

Rounding out the squad list are guards Paris Collins (Jackson State) and Marcus Romain (Mississippi Valley State), and forwards Tony Armstrong (Alabama State) and Chace Franklin (Jackson State).

The second team includes: guards Trelun Banks (Southern) and Rakiya Battle (Alabama A&M), and forwards Marquis Vance (Alcorn State) and Shawn Prudhomme (Southern), with Quinterian McConico earning the center spot from Alabama A&M.

In the event that a player was named to the first team during the postseason and does not return, the second team player for that position was elevated to the first team. Players were ranked in their position based on the number of votes received.

Men's 2016-17 Preseason Award Winners (Selected by SWAC Head Basketball Coaches and SID's)

FIRST TEAM
Guard – Paris Collins (Jackson State)                                                                                          
Guard – Marcus Romain (Mississippi Valley State)

Forward – Tony Armstrong (Alabama State)
Forward – Chace Franklin (Jackson State)
Center – Derrick Griffin (Texas Southern)

SECOND TEAM
Guard – Trelun Banks (Southern)
Guard – Rakiya Battle (Alabama A&M)
Forward – Marquis Vance (Alcorn State)
Forward – Shawn Prudhomme (Southern)
Center – Quinterian McConico (Alabama A&M)

Predicted Order of Finish
Texas Southern 180
Jackson State 165
Southern 160
Alabama State 118
Alcorn State 108
Prairie View A&M 91
Mississippi Valley State 67
Alabama A&M 60
Arkansas-Pine Bluff 49
Grambling State 47

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